Wow okra, who knew?
A newly discovered lectin in common okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) was shown to kill 72% of human breast cancer cells (MCF7) in vitro, mostly by inducing programmed cell death (apoptosis). The term In Vitro means in a laboratory Petri dish (literally in glassware). The okra extract was also shown to slow the growth of breast cancer cells by 63%. Its interesting that we are still discovering new anti-cancer compounds in common foods we eat on a regular basis. The research on okra for preventing cancer is just starting up, however another recent study has shown that okra pectin is active against highly metastatic melanoma cells (B16F10), reducing their proliferation, inducing cell cycle arrest and programmed cell death (apoptosis). In another study, the Southern eating pattern, characterized by eating okra, grits, cornbread, beans, rice and sweet potatoes, was shown to reduce the risk of prostate cancer by 40% in a group of American men, but interestingly a diet richer in fruit & vegetables did not reduce risk in that group. Bottom line: okra is a healthy food which is already widely consumed, and now latest research tells us it may give protection from at least three different cancers. More research is needed to confirm this in humans but in the meantime, it may be a good choice to add okra to your regular diet, which should already contain a wide variety of vegetables and plenty of them.
These studies dont necessarily mean okra is the panacea of cancer what it means is that nature has provided many natural ways to combat disease and the more research we can do and the more information we can share with others gives us opportunities to possibly find cures and preventive measures using Mother Nature instead of simply putting our faith in the medical communities singular approach to disease.
This information was sourced via The Eden Prescription I highly recommend visiting this site as well as following them on Facebook